Chick with external bowel obstruction??

Alicia

In the Brooder
10 Years
Jun 11, 2009
36
0
22
Please excuse the grossness of this topic, but I need some help.

I have 11 chicks that are just under 2 weeks old. While cleaning out the tub I'm keeping them in, I noticed that one of them was acting weak. I looked it over and saw that its rear end was crusted over with feces and though it is a little smaller than the other chicks, its belly was quite swollen.

I gently cleaned the crust off and *very* gently palpated the chick's swollen belly and about a Tablespoon of feces came out of this little guy. It was about the same consistency as the rest of the chicks is, though it was a little darker. There was no blood in it. When I put him down, he could barely stand.

He can stand and he can peep, though he is weak. He has feed and fresh water available to him all day long. We did change his feed 2 days ago from adult grain to chick feed. Other than not growing quite as fast as the other chicks and the weakness, There are no other symptoms that I can see; no cough, no unusual discharge anywhere, no blood.

What I need to know is whether this is a known condition that has a prescribed treatment and whether I need to quarantine this chick until he is better.

Any and all advice is very much appreciated.

--Alicia
 
Last edited:

TriciaHowe

Mother Hen
11 Years
Nov 11, 2008
2,351
13
191
Trenton, FL
Sounds like pasty butt. Pretty common. Keep an eye on him as it will probably return and you will have to clean it off again. No need to quarantine if there are no other symptoms.
Good luck and hope he perks up for you.
 

TXmom

Songster
11 Years
Dec 3, 2008
1,505
12
161
Sealy, TX (West Houston area)
I think we've all had to deal with a little bit of pasty butt...it can be deadly if not cleaned off. Just keep an eye on him, keep his hiney clean, and since he is weak you can try giving him any of the following:

Chopped hard-boiled egg yolk
Plain Yogurt
Chick food mixed with water or yogurt
Vitamin/Electrolyte powder in the water
Poly-Vi-Sol baby vitamins
 

TXmom

Songster
11 Years
Dec 3, 2008
1,505
12
161
Sealy, TX (West Houston area)
Yes, I agree with the parakeet grit. It changes the consistency of their poo a little bit...I bet it would help prevent the pasty butt. You can get parakeet/cockatiel/finch grit at Walmart, or anywhere that sells pet bird food.
 

countrybum

Songster
11 Years
Sep 15, 2008
1,264
1
159
area pop. 96
Quote:First I will say I hope your little guy gets better. That is very stressful for a baby chick.

Second, why would you be giving chicks under 2 weeks old adult crumbles? They need the higher protein which is in the chick starter. The layer crumbles could be what caused the abstruction in the first place.

I feed chick starter to my babies until they are 2 to 3 months old.
 

ZZsBabiez

Songster
11 Years
Sep 19, 2008
187
0
109
Central California
That is a good thing that he went poo after you cleaned it. I usually run warm tap water and just get their lil hiny wet... the poo comes off super easy and completely without pulling out anything.. the warm water will also stimulate them to go if they haven't been able to. Then they fluff right back like it was never there. Just be careful not to get the chick wet and cold.. it's tricky.
That chick probably needs a lil extra nutrition for a while. Hope it's okay. Sometimes they fail, and it's not just cause of that, so don't blame yourself if it doesn't make it. I've had chicks that had chronic pasty butt no matter what I did when all the hatchmates were fine.. I don't want to depress you.. Just prepare you in case.

Good luck!
 

Alicia

In the Brooder
10 Years
Jun 11, 2009
36
0
22
Quote:First I will say I hope your little guy gets better. That is very stressful for a baby chick.

Second, why would you be giving chicks under 2 weeks old adult crumbles? They need the higher protein which is in the chick starter. The layer crumbles could be what caused the abstruction in the first place.

I feed chick starter to my babies until they are 2 to 3 months old.

We just got them and didn't know any better.

The guy who gave them to us gave us some of the feed he had been using, so we used it until I found out we needed to give them chick food with higher protein, so we got rid of the old and started using the right stuff.
 

Alicia

In the Brooder
10 Years
Jun 11, 2009
36
0
22
Thank you all for your help. I'll clean him up and give him some boiled egg. I think he'll be OK. Thanks again!
 

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